I've been feeling like a bad blogger lately. It's not that I haven't had anything to say, more that I haven't made time to put my thoughts down.
Jeremy and I have been seeing a counselor to help navigate our newly married days and during our time with him last week he connected some (important) dots for us. We desire to deepen and increase our intimacy as our marriage goes on, and yet we have been struggling to feel like this is happening.
Something about talking about our week aloud during our counseling time made us see just how over-scheduled we truly are. It feels as if we took our two single lives with their busyness and relationships and just combined them when we started living in the same house. We took stock of our lives back in August and made a few little tweaks but I don't think either of us quite realised the emotional energy which would be required as we adjusted to marriage.
We both feel like we have stripped our lives back to bare bones and now what's left feels like a really painful surgery to remove. For so long these outlets were a part of our identity. These activities reflected who we are and what's important to us. Now our marriage is our priority, and that seems like a less comfortable fit in someways. When we 'put on' our marriage, we committed it would be the place we gave our best effort and energy. I think we are both finding more grace for friends who went before us in matrimony and seemed to disappear for a while! We had both made statements that we didn't want to cut all the things we loved out of lives just because we got married. Big words for two people who had no idea of the demands of marriage!!
Now I am not saying that when you get married you stop everything in your single life and just hang out with your spouse, but I do think there is some weight to the old testament wisdom to step back form church leadership responsibilities for the year after you get married to focus on building a firm foundation. This was the passage that my Pastor Mike spoke on during our wedding blessing ceremony and I think we need to take heed of it - even at 10 months in!!
We must continue to make play time in our schedule. We must fight the thought that it is not frivolous to clear time to just have fun together. Both Jeremy and I have a work-a-holic/ perfectionist tendency and combined, we can find it hard to relax without feeling guilty or like we are wasting time. As life has moved forward and we are now 10 months into marriage, we are seeing this need and desire for time together play out in our lives.
"Something's gotta give", as they say, and we refuse to let that be our marriage, so whatever else we have is up for discussion on the chopping board. No justification needed other than that.
We love our community and this is not to say we will become hermits sitting home every night, and developing our own language but it may mean saying, "no" more frequently than we do now. And possibly bowing out gracefully from some of the things that take significant chunks of time from our weeks.
I am sure we have some bumps along the road to deal with as we fight our own insecurities, fear, guilt and desire to please. Two people in that same situation may make for some fireworks but I believe even in this we will be gaining that intimacy we so desire.
In Seattle, the sun has been slow to show it's face this summer but we made the most of the little we had this past weekend ad put into practise some play time! A trip to the beach to play Bocce ball, a fun meal sitting outside a local bar and grill, some yard work - always better in the sun - games of cards, as well as a trip to golden gardens.
We are trying to make these changes now, in the small ways we can. This coming weekend, we cleared our schedules and are heading north to camp, just the two of us. We are so excited to get away together for some R & R, did i mention there will be a hot tub?!!
Here are some shots from our time at Golden gardens last weekend.